It is inhuman what these two nations are doing to each other. The massacre of infants, young and old civilians, without discrimination, in a cycle of revenge and hatred that gets fiercer and fiercer with each passing day. The tit for tat harks back to the 1900’s and the insistence of rights of both nations have been broadcasted endlessly in the mainstream media, and in more recent days, in social media. The war front has always been multifaceted and includes influencing the minds of millions of viewers in social media.
I lament this tragic feud between the descendants of the same family. The Palestinians (and Arabs) are descendants of Ishmael, the son of Abraham via Hagar his slave. The Jews are the descendants of Isaac, the son of Abraham via Sarah his wife. They are brothers.
There is some scientific evidence that points to the truth of the biblical story. It is not new. An interesting research in 2000 surfaced some stunning findings from DNA studies. “More than 70% of Jewish men and half of the Arab men whose DNA was studied inherited their Y chromosomes from the same paternal ancestors who lived in the region within the last few thousand years.” Ann Gibbons who authored this article in Science.org continued to report that: “The results match historical accounts that some Moslem Arabs are descended from Christians and Jews who lived in the southern Levant, a region that includes Israel and the Sinai. They were descendants of a core population that lived in the area since prehistoric times. And in a recent study of 1371 men from around the world, geneticist Michael Hammer of the University of Arizona in Tucson found that the Y chromosome in Middle Eastern Arabs was almost indistinguishable from that of Jews.” Read her full article HERE.
This certainly matches the Genesis story account which shows that the two sons of Abraham were in estranged relationships as brothers, and that both their mothers could not get along. There was envy, insecurity, anger, rejection, hurt, fear, enmity and hatred as both families tried to co-exist and find a safe space in the household of Abraham (Genesis 16,17,25). These feelings of mutual enmity and contempt have resurfaced in the lives of the millions of descendants of both sons of Abraham. More so over the Yom Kippur attacks by the Hamas into Israel last weekend, on the evening of Sunday, 24th September to the evening of Monday 25thSeptember 2023. The massacres were during the most holy day of the Jewish religious calendar, the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16).
The two peoples have been slaughtering each other with bombs, bullets and broadcasts. I lament this tragic outcome of the descendants of brothers who were meant to live together in covenant loyalty and loving relationships. I do not think it will ever stop. I am pessimistic of any future rapproachment between the Palestinians and the Israelis. The only hope I harbour of these two finding real rapproachment, love and reconciliation is in Christ. There has to be internal peace before external peace can be achieved. I am sure in a Christian fellowship of Palestinians and Israelis, there can be forgiveness, reconciliation and true peace and love, despite any lingering disagreements of right and wrong. The love of Christ alone can cover all sins and enmity.
Therefore, while I lament now, I also long and yearn with hope for the day when Isaiah’s prophecy will be fulfilled: “The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall graze, their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The nursing child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put its hand on the adder’s den. They will not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain; for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.” (Isa 11:6-9)
Thus the weight of my prayers for both these people lean more towards the salvation of souls, that the remnant will come to the Lord in repentance and love. For then and only then, can the descendants of these Ishmael and Isaac find forgiveness and reconciliation in the bosom of their Father in heaven.